As my brother bishops and I have stated in "Faithful Citizenship: Civic Responsibility for a New Millennium," the critical principles by which we should judge those who run for elected office are the protection of human life, the promotion of family life, the pursuit of social justice and the practice of global solidarity.Bishop Loverde's Pre-Election Letter here.
The foundation for these principles is the first, the protection of human life, since without it the other three would be rendered meaningless. If we do not uphold and protect human life in its beginning at conception, there will be no life to uphold and protect thereafter.
Proportionate reason does not mean that each issue carries the same moral weight; intrinsically evil acts such as abortion or research on stem cells taken from human embryos cannot be placed on the same level as debates over war or capital punishment, for example. It is simply not possible to serve and promote the common good of our nation by voting for a candidate who, once in office, will do nothing to limit or restrict the deliberate destruction of innocent human life.